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Things to do During an Intervention for Someone With Substance Use Disorder

When someone you love doesn’t want to come to terms with their addiction, no matter how obvious it is to everyone else, it may be time for an intervention. In a perfect world, the person who’s battling a substance use disorder (SUD) would understand that friends and family who are gathering together to intervene want to help and they’ll enroll at a Dallas addiction treatment center. But that isn’t always the case.

An intervention can be a very emotional, and the person who you’re trying to help can react very negatively. To reduce the chance of that happening, there are steps you can take before and during the interevention to make it a productive experience for everyone involved.  

Have a Professional Present at the Intervention

There are addiction treatment centers that offer intervention services and assistance, which we highly recommend. Their trained specialists, who are often recovering addicts themselves, can serve as a moderator that keeps the intervention productive. They understand where your loved one is coming from, which helps them make a connection. The intervention professional also serves as an example of what’s possible when you get help from an addiction recovery center.

Another benefit of getting professional help is they can prep you in advance before the intervention. They’ll give you a better idea of what to expect, help you pick a location and coordinate getting your loved one into a facility after the intervention. The professional can also help everyone coordinate their message so that you are a unified front. 

Bring a Written Letter

Writing out what you want to tell your loved one at the intervention can help you organize your thoughts and express yourself clearly. It’s also a very therapuetic practice that may help you manage your emotions better in the moment. If nothing else, writing out notes for the intervention will ensure you don’t miss any important points. 

Another benefit of writing out your thoughts and feelings is it serves as a reminder that can improve resolve. Your loved one can keep the letter as motivation to stay sober, or you can keep it to remember the boundaries you’re setting.

Set Boundaries and Stick to Them

When boundaries are set and made clear at an intervention it helps convince a person to seek help at an addiction treatment center. For many people, these boundaries are the ultimate consequence of their substance abuse. When it’s made clear that loved ones will no longer enable or possibly even associate with them unless they get help at an addiction recovery center it’s the wake up call many people need to join a rehab program

When boundaries are made clear, keep it very matter-of-fact and focused on the substance abuse. It should be clear that the boundaries only apply if they continue to use drugs or alcohol. And if your loved one chooses not to go to a Dallas addiction treatment center, you have to stick to the boundaries you’ve set. Once they see you are serious it could encourage them to finally get the help they need. 

Offer Them Support

Even though you may be setting some pretty stark boundaries and consequences if your loved one doesn’t enter rehab, you can still let them know that they have your support. That you are always there for them if they decide to get help with their addiction. Let them know that addiction is a treatable disease and with the right help they can overcome it.

Many people who battle SUDs have poor self-esteem and a negative outlook on their capabilities. Being surrounded by supportive people that offer reassurance that they can get sober increases a person’s chance of getting there. 

Give Counterpoints for Objections

There’s a high likelihood your loved one will object to the idea of going to an addiction treatment center, and claim they can get clean on their own. This is where research and planning beforehand pays off. 

Before the intervention, have everyone who will be involved list out any possible objections your loved one may give. Bring prepared responses for each objection. Remain calm and logical with each counterpoint, offering up solutions for the reasons they give for not taking responsibility and getting treatment. 

Force Them to Make a Decision

An intervention is a time for action. Lines are drawn in the sand and it has to end with your loved one making a decision to either get help at addiction treatment centers or suffer the consequences you’ve laid out. Giving them time to think about it dramatically reduces the chances of them going to rehab and increases the chance that they’ll go on a dangerous binge or go into hiding where you can’t help them. 

At Lighthouse Recovery our Dallas addiction treatment centers provide family support at all stages. We can help you coordinate an intervention, get professional assistance and ensure a smooth transition into recovery.

Schedule a free assessment with a trained addiction specialist to learn more. 


Learn more about our services or contact us below to discover how Lighthouse can help you on your road to recovery today. Thank you for your trust.